A footbath is one of the most important tools used on dairy farms to prevent lameness and maintain hoof health. When used properly and paired with a disinfectant, a footbath can prevent and control foot rot and digital dermatitis on dairy farms. Recently, the recommendations for footbath dimensions have changed after new research was conducted at the UW School of Veterinary Medicine.
In 2020, there were multiple calves found unable to stand at birth or shortly after and were then seen by veterinarians in Pennsylvania. Calves were either weak and unable to stand immediately after birth, could stand with assistance, or lost the ability to stand within the first two weeks of life.
Early in April, the Council for Dairy Cattle Breeding (CDCB) released one of the three-times-a-year updates to sire summaries. It can be a lot like looking through seed catalogs to find what bulls to select for the future of your herd. The rankings of bulls keep on getting better, and fast!
Today many forage tests provide information beyond the energy and protein in the feed but also feed fermentation quality and its stability in the manger. Having efficient fermentation is critical to ensure the forages being fed are highly palatable and digestible.
Estrus detection, commonly referred to as heat detection, is one of the most important reproductive management tasks performed on the farm. Simply put, if cows are not identified in estrus they will not be bred by Artificial Insemination (AI) and have no chance of becoming pregnant. Estrus detection accuracy is also critical.
Clinical and subclinical ketosis are the most common metabolic disorder in high-producing dairy cows, costing up to $289 per case. According to the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine, 93% of ketosis cases occur between 5 and 30 days post-calving.
In the increasing discussions about how to address climate change there are conflicting claims about the need to address methane (CH4) emissions. Some people argue that methane emitted by cows is a primary cause of climate change. Others argue that methane from beef and dairy production is not of much concern because of its relatively short duration in the atmosphere.
Using proper injection techniques for animal health products, including reproductive hormones, helps ensure products work effectively. In addition, it is important to safely handle animals and health products to protect both farm workers and animals.
Corn silage is a key forage fed to lactating dairy cows in Wisconsin. Upgrading the nutritional value of corn silage could maximize the consumption of dry matter or increase the energy density of the diet.
Properly cleaning, sanitizing, and storing multi-dose syringes and transfer needles will reduce contamination from many viruses, bacteria, and fungi. The steps described here use only tap and distilled or deionzed (purified) water and do not render the equipment sterile.
Maintaining a successful reproductive program in our modern dairy and beef operations requires dedication. While it is rewarding to hear a pronouncement of pregnancy, there is not much the manager can do with that information, except wait.
Something that is constantly on the mind of dairy producers, no matter how small or large the farm, is the cost of production. Feed is the largest input cost on the dairy, making efficiency with feed bunk management a priority for all dairy farm managers.